GOLD RIVER, Calif. – The Gonzaga women’s rowing team will begin its quest at the three-day NCAA Rowing Championships on Friday in Gold River, Calif., on Lake Natoma.
The NCAA appearance is Gonzaga’s third in the last four years after claiming the West Coast Conference title two weeks ago on the same body of water. GU’s Varsity 8 entered the final race of the WCC Championship with only a win able to secure the automatic NCAA berth. That crew went on to grab a victory over San Diego. The Second Varsity 8 and Varsity 4 each placed second in their respective races at the league regatta. This will be Gonzaga’s third regatta this spring on Lake Natoma after competing in the Lake Natoma Invitational as well.
Head coach Glenn Putyrae’s squad is led by an accomplished group of seniors and deep combination of talented underclassmen in all three boats. Senior Kara Soucek earned WCC Rower of the Year honors for the second straight season, sophomore Karly Dougherty was named WCC Coxswain of the Year for the second straight season and freshman Lauren English was named WCC Newcomer of the Year in her first year in a Bulldog uniform. Seniors Brooklyn Beeler, Ingrid Stansberry and Devyn Bell all earned All-WCC honors alongside Soucek as well.
Gonzaga is seeded No. 15 out of 22 teams in both the Varsity 8 and Second Varsity 8 boats, and No. 17 in the Varsity 4. The Varsity 8 heats kick off the action on Friday with GU in Heat 2 at 9:12 a.m., followed by the Second Varsity 8 in Heat 2 at 10:00 a.m. and the Varsity 4 in Heat 1 beginning at 10:36 a.m. The Friday afternoon repechages will begin at 4:12 p.m. with two heats for each boat class. Action on both Saturday and Sunday will start at 8:12 a.m. for Division I.
The top two teams from each of the four heats will advance to Saturday’s A-B semifinals. The remaining teams will compete in the repechages on Friday afternoon. The top two in each of the repechages will advance to the A-B semifinals, while the remaining teams will compete in the C-D semifinals. The top three crews from the A-B semis advance to the Grand Final, the remainder to the Petite Final. The top three crews from the C-D semis advance to the C final with the remainder to the D final.
Automatic qualifiers joining Gonzaga at the NCAA Championships are California, UCF, Jacksonville, Princeton, Rhode Island, Navy, Northeastern, Ohio State, Texas and Virginia. At-large selections include Brown, Duke, Indiana, Michigan, USC, Stanford, Syracuse, Washington, Washington State, Wisconsin and Yale.
GU will be looking to improve upon its program-best 17th-place finish at last season’s NCAA Championships.
Varsity 8 - Karly Dougherty, Kara Soucek, Ingrid Stansberry, Meghan McCallum, Devyn Bell, Lauren English, Brooklyn Beeler, Olivia Marsh, Lindey English
Second Varsity 8 - Hailey Rousseau, Lily Rorick, Micailah Donner, Isabelle Belzil, Hannah Schneiderman,Anna Johnson, Madeleine Verspieren, Hannah Brown, Casey Harder
Varsity 4 – Marie Hayman, Amelie Tristant, Georgia Davey, Megan Seifert, Clare Manthey
Varsity 8, Heat 2, 9:12 a.m.
Second Varsity 8, Heat 2, 10:00 a.m.
Varsity 4, Heat 1, 10:36 a.m.